Everett Dejong | Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies

Everett Dejong

University of Guelph Master of Landscape Architecture graduate student Everett Dejong

2023 MLA

Advice for Prospective Grad Students...

My words of wisdom would be to enjoy the experience and permit yourself the opportunity to fail. I've discovered more about who I am and what direction is best for me by allowing myself to go in one direction, realizing that I made a mistake. Only you can experience the joy of discovering who you are as a person, but you may need to take the risk of learning who you're not. The three-year MLA program gives you the time and the team to support you in this journey.


Landscape Architecture

Why did you choose to complete your graduate studies in your program at the University of Guelph? 

The University of Guelph has quality professors teaching in an empathic manner, enabling graduating in a direction that matches your personality.

A bit about your path... 

I am a 50-year-old student who has experience in the landscape industry but lacks theoretical knowledge. I always had difficulty answering why we do things in the landscape industry and wanted to explore and understand the reasoning behind the experience.

A bit about the work you are doing here... 

What excites me most about my time here at the University of Guelph is the opportunity to research. I had never appreciated how much research brings out creativity. I entered the program to release creativity, but it has turned me into an explorer of the mysterious. I hope to pass these discoveries on to the more creative individuals surrounding me. 

How do you think your research (or the work you are doing at U of G) can potentially improve life? 

I believe my research can improve life because I am endeavouring to research and write on how we, as landscape architects, can design outdoor space to impact human genetic makeup positively. We know that trauma like war and famine can affect generations, but we don't know much about the reverse. How can well-designed outdoor space impact generations?

Please comment on your academic relationship with your advisor 

Karen Landman is fantastic and I am so thankful for her. She has been very supportive and encouraging which has been much appreciated.

What do you plan to do after graduation? How has UofG helped you reach that goal? 

I plan to expand my current business in landscape architecture, offering specialized services extended to contemporary landscape architects. My research focus has been on the relationship of outdoor space to human health, which has become my passion. I hope to continue researching this area and offer this knowledge and experience in a transactional way to provide for my family and share with those in need.

Briefly describe what it is like to be a graduate student at UofG 

I cannot in a fair way describe what it's like to be a graduate student at the University of Guelph because the two years I've been attending have been the two years of the COVID pandemic. Our MLA23 cohort will experience a journey that no one before or after will experience.